• Old age depression can increase risk of dementia

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    A study shows that late-age depression may increase risk of dementia.

    ISLAMABAD: Depression in a group of Medicare recipients ages 65 years and older has been linked with prevalent mild cognitive impairment and an increased risk of dementia, according to a study.

    Depressive symptoms occur in 3 percent to 63 percent of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and some studies have shown an increased dementia risk in individuals with a history of depression.

    The mechanisms behind the association between depression and cognitive decline have not been made clear and different mechanisms have been proposed, the researchers pointed out.

    Edo Richard, M.D, Ph.D, of the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and colleagues evaluated the association of late-life depression with MCI and dementia in a group of 2,160 community-dwelling Medicare recipients.

    Baseline depression was associated with prevalent MCI (odds ratio [OR], 1.4) and dementia (OR, 2.2) while baseline depression was associated with an increased risk of incident dementia (hazard ratio [HR], 1.7) but not with incident MCI (HR, 0.9).

    Patients with MCI and coexisting depression at baseline also had a higher risk of progression to dementia (HR, 2.0), especially vascular dementia (HR, 4.3), but not Alzheimer disease (HR, 1.9), according to the study results.

    The results were published Online First by Archives of Neurology, a JAMA Network publication.

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